Intelligent Triathlon Talk

13th September 2011, Issue No3

Welcome to Intelligent Triathlon Talk.

In this issue:

  • News update
  • Training Tip Of the Month
  • New on the site itself
  • Have you been racing? Enter our competition to win a Swimsmooth DVD boxset and improve your swim technique!


Our big news this month is that one of Mark’s athletes, Matt Sharp, is World U23 Champion. (Mark is Performance Coach for British Triathlon’s High Performance Centre in Loughborough.)

Mark reviews the last few weeks of the season for his group:

The last month has been an exciting and successful end to the 2011 season for my squad. After Matt Sharp won in Geneva, Aaron Harris followed this up a week later with a podium in Banyoles to book his ticket along with Matt to the ITU World U23 Championships in Beijing.

The same weekend Matt and Adam competed in the final round of the British Super series in London, securing 2nd and 3rd places respectively. Despite this result Aaron had already done enough to secure the overall win with Matt and Adam joining him on the podium.

Two weeks later the guys traveled to Tiszaujvaros for the European round of the ITU World Cup. After a stellar swim Aaron managed to get into a break on the bike, which eventually took a lead of 1:15 into T2. He set out in the lead and dominated the run until the final 1km when Brent McMahon of Canada passed him for the victory. This was a break through race for Aaron, with a podium in the ITU’s development series in only his 2nd attempt.

This was backed up by Adam and Matt also finishing in the top 10 with 6th and 9th respectively. Unfortunately the effort in 38C temperatures had taken a toll on Aaron, who had suffered extreme heat exhaustion in the later stages. This can produce serious consequences if not managed well and we decided to have a 9 day complete rest from training, supported by our medical team.

Onto Beijing then, and the World U23 championships. The young athletes from around the world gathering to find out who will be the next stars of the future.

With the likes of Olympic Champion Jan Frodeno, Alistair and brother Jonny Brownlee, not to mention Javier Gomez all having won this title in the past 7 years it is certainly an indication of senior athletes to come.

After a great swim from Aaron and Matt, who were joined in a strong British team by Tom Bishop and David MacNamee, they all made the lead group on the bike. They proceeded to enter transition 1min behind a lead group of 3 which had slipped off the front.

By the end of lap 1 on the run, the break was neutralised, and it was then Matt with Tom and David leading a group of 5. Aaron had headed out with them but his efforts in Tiszaujvaros had proved too much and the lack of training over the past few weeks took its toll. He continued on commendably to take 12th.

The front 5 stayed together for the next 2 laps before surges by Matt and Tom detached first Pierre Le Corre, and then in the final 1500m USA’s Greg Billington.

With about 500 to go Matt put in a final surge and dropped Tom and David. This proved to be the race winning effort and Matt strode in to take his first World Title and become ITU World U23 men's champion!

David managed a final effort to out-sprint Tom and make it a stunning GBR 1-2-3. Proud of them all!

Adam's debut in the World Series Grand Final looked to have started well when he exited the swim in the lead group, however it appears he was a little too eager and had to serve a 15s penalty for a false start. This dropped him to the second pack and meant he eventually entered T2 about a minute behind the lead group. After a solid run he eventually finished 39th. Frustrating for him, but with some strong positives to take into the Yokohama WCS event next week. Look out for him there!

That will mark the end of the season for most of the athletes in my group. It has been a long season since we headed of to South America in January.

There have been many roller coaster rides, with the high highs and some lows, however despite all of this the group has been focussed on what we set out to do a year ago.

And that has been brought home this weekend, all the guys have had their plan and while we have had to adapt, develop and re-schedule the plan has provided the focus and drive to achieve the targets.

Matt, Aaron and Adam, along with Abbie Thorrington have exceeded their aims this year due to hard work, dedication and a good plan presented in a manner which allows them to take it step by step. This leads us nicely on to our training tip of the month.

Training Tip Of The Month

Each session is just one piece of the jigsaw. Don't get hung up on a certain session and think it holds the answer to everything. The plan that you put in place is the key to your performance. The plan is how the pieces of the jigsaw are arranged, but those pieces must reflect the picture you want to see.

So first you have to be honest with yourself about what you want and what you want to see, then you have be honest about what your strengths and weaknesses are. Only then do you set about training.

Many of you will have either finished racing for the season or the end will be in sight. Now is the time to take some time off training to rest and recover. A complete break from training for a few weeks is fine, but if you want to stay active, try doing different activities to normal so that you are fresh and ready to go when you get back into training.

Mark In The Media:

Mark features on the BBC website, in a video article about triathlon tactics, talking through Alastair and Jonny Brownlees’ race strategies during the London World Championship Series race last month. You can watch the article here.

New On The Website

Since the last newsletter (you can find back issues here) we have added a page on how to get your wetsuit on and off with ease. This includes a video guide.

We have also had more visitors write wetsuit reviews, so if you are thinking of investing in a new one, check these out – or feel free to add a review of your own.

Have You Been Racing?

Entries have started flying in for our triathlon race review contest. The prize for the best race review is a Swimsmooth DVD boxset worth US$60/£39 to help you improve your swimming technique and efficiency in the water.

You can look at the current entries, or submit your own entry on our triathlon events page. Closing date for entries is Monday 10th October 2011.

Ask the Coach

Got a question for us? Submit it to the website and check out other people’s questions - and our answers.

Coming Up

Well, now that the main triathlon race season has come to an end we’re off on holiday for a couple of weeks!

However once we’re back, we’ll be adding some more training plans, and also some interviews with triathletes and coaches – both elite and non-elite.

So if you are a keen triathlete and would like to be interviewed and feature on our site, or know someone who would, please contact us!

To keep up to date with every new page on the site subscribe to our RSS feed or ‘like’ us on Facebook.
If you like this e-zine, please forward it to fellow triathletes who you think might be interested. If a friend did forward this to you and if you like what you read, please subscribe by visiting this page. By doing so you'll also receive a copy of our free triathlon training planner.

Comments? Ideas? Feedback? We’d love to hear from you. Please contact us.

See you next time!

Rhona & Mark

© 2011, Intelligent Triathlon Training, published by Rhona Pearce. Reproduction of any material from this newsletter without written permission is prohibited.

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